Should I Settle My Workers’ Compensation Case?

Deciding whether to receive a lump sum settlement for your workers’ compensation case, or weekly benefits, is a matter that should be well-researched before choosing one over the other. Here, Douglas Sachse details the considerations that should be taken to choose the best workers’ compensation outcome for you.

Workers’ Compensation Settlement Versus Weekly Benefits

In workers’ compensation cases, plaintiffs are able to decide between two payment outcomes: weekly benefits, or a lump sum settlement. As the name implies, payments are paid to the plaintiff weekly, and depending on the type of disability, these payments will continue until the plaintiff heals, has reached maximum medical improvement or in perpetuity for permanent total disability.

A lump sum settlement is a one-time payment to a plaintiff. The amount of the settlement varies depending on the disability’s severity and scope. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney will help you negotiate an appropriate settlement sum. If you decide on a lump sum settlement, you will be unable to collect weekly benefits from the point of settlement onwards—a lump sum settlement closes the benefits part of a workers’ compensation case.

Pros of a Lump Sum Settlement

Accepting a settlement means potentially avoiding court, saving you time and frustration. It also ensures you a minimum benefit amount, whereas during your workers’ compensation hearing, the judge may decide a lower benefit amount is more appropriate. Finally, you may be able to receive money from the insurance company in exchange for forfeiting the right to future treatment. If, for example, there is a slight chance you will require a surgery or procedure in the future, you can have the insurance company pay you part of the cost of this treatment—most likely you will not require it, and be able to keep the money.

Cons of a Lump Sum Settlement

As mentioned previously, accepting a settlement means permanently forgoing weekly payments. Furthermore, a settlement implies the revocation of your rights to future medical treatment—if your disability takes a turn for the worse, and requires new and more expensive treatment or care, you will not be able to petition for the insurance company to cover it. Finally, there is always a concern that a lump sum settlement could be spent all at once, leaving no money left for future expenses.

How Sachse Law Can Help

Determining the best workers’ compensation outcome for your case is a complicated decision, and having an expert on your side is critical for success. With our lengthy experiencing litigating workers’ compensation cases, you can rest assured knowing that your attorney will do all in their power to ensure you receive the benefits you deserve and require. Before making such an important decision, have a workers’ compensation advocate review your case and explain the ideal course of action. For more information, or to schedule a free consultation, we urge you to contact us today!

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